Most of us have been to a haunted house at one point in our lives. We pay a lot of money just to have someone jump out from behind a dark curtain to hear us scream. But have you ever been in an actual haunted house? One that has deep secrets that only some people know. You’ll hear noises, see ghosts, and have unexplainable occurrences happen. I’ve lived in two houses that were haunted. While nothing necessarily happened to me, we did have windows break when nobody was around, we had friends get pushed down the stairs even though nobody was within arm’s reach, and we have seen plenty of dark, ghostly figures fly before our face. The only explanation we had is that the house was haunted. But after seeing these top 10 haunted hotels in North America, I’ll say that our paranormal activity was pretty minimal compared to these places. After reading about the history behind these places, let us know in the comments below if you would stay in these haunted hotels.
1. Crescent Hotel – Eureka Springs, Arkansas
The hotel was designed by an architect named Isaac L. Taylor in 1886. It was originally designed as a hotel, but due to financial hardships it closed down. In 1908, it was reopened as the Crescent College and Conservatory for Young Women. This also fell on financial hardships, and closed in 1924. They tried reopening it as a junior college from 1930-1934, but once again, it closed.
In 1937 it was sold to Dr. Norman Baker who was an inventor and happened to make millions of dollars in 1934. He called himself a doctor although he had no medical training. His newest idea was that he said he could cure various diseases. The cure was drinking natural spring water that was found on the grounds. It didn’t necessarily harm anyone, but it certainly didn’t cure anyone either. He ended up being charged by the federal government for mail fraud and spent four years in prison, which caused the hotel be closed down again. In 1946, new investors reopened the hotel and started to restore the building.
This hotel can be found in Arkansas. Guests have said they’ve seen ghosts and other odd things happening in the rooms, the lobby, the dining room, and also on the grounds. There is no need to request a haunted room when staying here. Outside of the recreation room, guests have reported seeing the ghost of Dr. Norman Baker. He appears often and usually looks a little confused. He operated a hospital and health resort in the same building during the 1930s, which raised a lot of controversy. In the dining room, people have also seen ghosts that are wearing Victorian clothing. They’ve been seen in the mirrors and also sitting at the tables.
2. Heathman Hotel – Portland, Oregon
Located in Portland, Oregon, this hotel has had a lot of paranormal activity reported. With rooms that end in 03, especially room 703, there have been a lot of reports about moving objects, cold spots, and noises. When pictures have been taken in room 703, there is a dark cloud over the entire room. And even in some pictures you may see a distorted face looking at you from around a dark corner. Also in room 703, guests will leave their room clean only to return to a room that has used towels, a glass of water, or a desk chair moved. When looking at the hotel records, the staff does not show that anyone entered the room using the electronic key. All rooms ending in 03 (for example 703, 803, 1003, etc.) have all reported similar occurrences.
In April 2004, the front desk clerk reported that a guest called to tell them that they had felt a presence in bed with them. Another guest reported hearing heavy breathing and that the sheets were wrapped so tight around him that he couldn’t even move. He tried getting out of bed, but the breathing only got louder and closer. He managed to escape the tightening sheets, but when he turned the lights on he saw two of his heavy suitcases go flying across the room. He then saw a dark image of a man running into the closet. He thought someone had actually broken into his room, but when security arrived they found that the only person other than them in the room was the hotel guest that called.
3. Carolina Inn – Chapel Hill, North Carolina
This hotel has been visited by a lot of paranormal investigators. While it was originally thought that most of the paranormal activity happened on the first floor, this was found untrue when they were able to capture both sights and sounds throughout the hotel. Some guests have said they were followed by a man who disappears as soon as they turn to face him. There has also been reports of a large man wearing a black suit and knit hat. He is also wearing a long blue coat and he wanders the halls checking until he finds an open door. Guests have reported this particular ghost to the staff daily, some saying they heard their door knob open and when they go to check, they see him fleeing.
One ghost that is reported to haunt the Carolina Inn is that of Dr. William Jacocks. He lived in this hotel for almost 20 years, in the same room. Guests who have stayed in this room are often locking themselves out, even though they don’t remember locking the door. They once removed the door from the hinges to get it unlocked, but the door wouldn’t move.
4. Provincial Hotel – New Orleans, Louisiana
Stories of doors opening and shutting, footsteps being heard even though nobody was around to make the noise, along with whispering sounds and cold & hot spots make this one of the most haunted hotels in North America. The hotel was once a hospital for the Confederate Army and people have reported seeing Confederate soldiers and doctors roaming the halls, and even reaching out to guests for help.
A couple from Washington was visiting for a convention and stayed in one room that was haunted by a soldier. The soldier loved country music, and the staff member mentioned this to the couple when they arrived. The staff member said that they were once showing guests into the room and there was a man dressed in a 1930s military uniform, including the hat and medals. While staying in this room, the couple felt like they were being watched the entire time. Other guests have mentioned that they try to change the station on the radio, but it always ends up going back to WTIX-FM 94.3.
A woman who was staying the hotel during Mardi Gras reported being woken up by someone grabbing her hand and pulling her from bed. She was then pulled towards a wall, even though she was kicking and fighting. She thought she was going to be pulled into the wall. She checked out soon afterwards. It is said that Building #5 of the Provincial Hotel is the most haunted. People have walked into their rooms only to find a pile of bloody soldiers laying on the floor in pain, but when they turn the lights on, they all disappear.
5. Hotel Del Coronado – San Diego, California
While San Diego may seem like the ultimate vacation destination, there is a lot of ghostly sightings throughout the city. One of the most talked about is the paranormal activity that happens at the Hotel del Coronado. The hotel was built in 1888 and became a National Historic Landmark in 1977. Even though it is haunted, The Travel Channel rates it as the number one wedding destination in America. But there are constant noises, unexplainable breezes, and a young lady wearing a black dress that tends to appear from nowhere.
The woman in the black dress is said to be the ghost of Kate Morgan. She checked into the hotel in 1892 in order to meet her estranged husband. He never did show up, and she was found on the beach, dead from a gunshot wound. They believe that her lonely spirit haunts the hotel, and that’s who is causing the cold spots, noises, and odd breezes felt in closed rooms.
When President Ford stayed at The Hotel Del Coronado, one of his Secret Service agents stayed in Kate Morgan’s room. He also heard a lot of odd noises.
When parapsychologists arrived at the hotel and used their equipment in room 3502, they found 37 paranormal activities in one day!
6. Stanley Hotel – Estes Park, Colorado
The Stanley Hotel may look familiar because it inspired Steven King to write his famous book, The Shining, while he stayed in room 217. However room 418 offers the most ghostly activity. When they filmed the made-for-TV version of The Shining, they filmed it at The Stanley Hotel. It was not Steven King’s arrival that caused the hauntings to start. They’d been happening for a very long time. The hotel originally opened in 1909. It was owned by F.O. and Flora Stanley. Flora’s favorite past time was playing the piano late at night, while F.O. liked to play the piano in the music room and also visit the billiards room and the lobby. People have reported seeing both of their spirits throughout the hotel.
Even though room 418 is the most active when it comes to the paranormal, the entire fourth floor is very busy with activity. When people have stayed in room 408, they have heard children playing and laughing outside their door, but when they check the hallway is empty. There have been guests who left their room for just a few moments, only to return back to a room that has been completely disorganized and has children’s hand prints all over the mirrors.
There have also been reports of water faucets turning on in the middle of the night, toilets flushing, and personal objects being thrown across the room. It may not be as haunted as it was in The Shining, but there have been a lot of guests who can substantiate the reported paranormal activity. One review on TripAdvisor stated, “Three harmless interactions with poltergeists in the Music Room, Macgregor Room and our bedroom (Lodge 1306).”
7. Ramada Plaza Hotel – Fond du Lac, Wisconsin
This hotel is built on top of underground tunnels that were once used by Chicago gangsters when they made their escapes, with the tunnels ending in the hotel’s basement. The owner Walter Schoreder was reportedly murdered on the hotel grounds and currently haunts the property. He tends to turn on the water faucets, flip the light switches, bangs on the walls, and screams. There have been voices reported in the halls during the day and night, footsteps heard behind you when nobody is around, and bodies bumping into you when nobody is there. One guest reported a man walking down the hall with a red-headed woman who was wearing a white bathrobe, but when seen they seem startled and disappear.
Activity was so constant that the staff started to keep a ghost log, so they could keep track of all paranormal reports. In 2001, a guest and a few housekeepers heard a man screaming on the seventh floor. A maintenance worker named Bill ran up to Room 717 where they had heard the screaming. When Bill arrived, he heard the man say, “Help Me!” and the door began to move outwardly like it was being kicked from the inside. When Bill checked with the front desk to see who was in the room, they said that the female guest who had been staying there checked out a few hours before the screams were heard and nobody was currently in that room.
An ex-employee of the hotel said, “I used to work there. It was originally a hotel, but was then renovated into a psych hospital and then a nursing home. After the nursing home, it sat empty before being made back into a hotel. It is said that a ballerina jumped out of the seventh floor window, and another man hung himself on the second floor, where the ballroom is now. There have also been strange hums and glowing in one of the smaller banquet rooms.
8. Queen Mary Hotel – Long Beach, California
The Queen Mary Hotel offers a different type of hotel because it’s an ocean liner which is now docked at the Port Of Long Beach. It is one of the most famous places in California. A lot of guests have reported hearing strange rapping noises, moving objects, voices, and ghostly figures walking throughout the hallways and stairs. In the Queen’s Salon, some have said they’ve seen a young woman in a white evening gown dancing alone in the shadows.
The Queen Mary has been docked permanently since 1967. One of the hot spots for ghostly sightings are at the first and second class swimming pools. They aren’t currently used today, but that doesn’t stop the paranormal activity. There have been sightings of women dressed in 1930s style swimming suites, wandering the docks near the pool. Others have heard splashing, and then seen wet footprints leading into the changing rooms. There has also been a sighting of a young girl holding tightly onto her teddy bear. Near the second class pool room, it is reportedly haunted by a small girl named Jackie. When the boat was sailing in the ocean, she unfortunately drowned, her voice and laughter can still be heard today.
9. Sagamore Hotel – Bolton Landing, New York
This hotel is located in the Adirondack Mountains and is said to be home to many lost spirits, which include a little boy who haunts the golf course. This little boy is said to steal your golf balls and then throw them at you from behind a tree. Golfers have reported hearing him laugh loudly.
There have been reports of a couple walking through the dining room, but guests have only been able to get a glimpse at them. But when they were able to see him, they say the man flings the woman hard to the floor, and she reaches up at him violently, before disappearing into the carpet. There is also a lady who wears all white. She enters many rooms and guests have said they feel wispy chills when she’s around. She’ll wake up guests by looking into their faces and blowing a chill onto their eyelids. A lot of guests have left the hotel because they had sleepless nights and felt like they were being watched.
10. Le Pavilion Hotel – New Orleans, Louisiana
This hotel was receiving a lot of reports about paranormal activity so they decided to hire a paranormal investigator. He found that there were several ghosts living in the hotel. Using EVP’s they heard the ghosts saying, “Please, get out.” and “Hold on, I see you now.” One investigator said they found over 100 individual ghosts and haunted hot spots throughout the hotel. There have been strange noises reported along with figures standing at the foot of guests’ beds. Guests have reported that their sheets were tugged into the air as well.
One guest reported seeing an old gray haired woman who was dressed in a black garment, sitting next to his bed. He felt the weight of her body on the bed and also against him. He woke up and looked at the clock, which read 2:30am. He then felt her cold hands stroking his head, and she whispered, “I will never let you go. You are mine.” He jumped out of bed, turned the light on and she was gone.
Some of these stories make me never want to stay in a hotel ever again. You never know what you’re signing up for if you don’t do your research first. Having lived in a house that was haunted, I think I would feel comfortable enough staying in one of these hotels, however I say that now. This could change quickly if there was any type of activity I experienced. Would you dare stay in a haunted hotel?
Would it be worth the possible nightmares that would follow? Let us know in the comments below.